"Stability and Reforms before the Fiscal Crisis"


José María Aznar: “(…)The Constitutional Court has rejected the idea that the Constitution expresses the desire of the Spanish Nation of ending its own existence. Because that is precisely what the promoters of the Estatuto look forward to, they think that the Constitution is a huge temporary regulation that should only last as long as they want it to. This has already been settled (…)”

Jerzy Buzek: “Credit card culture must end. We must pay the bill. If we don’t, what we’re doing is squandering our children and grandchildren’s inheritance”

Kenneth Rogoff: “Public debt soars high after a financial crisis because the Government assumes more debt than it can afford”

Blanca Moreno-Dodson: “This crisis seems different to previous ones for poor countries because of the adjustments that they had made before. The fall of economic growth has been shorter and the recovery capability has been larger”

Jesús Fernández Villaverde: “What would have happened in Spain with a different fiscal policy? If we had practised a fiscal policy focused on limiting expenditure, we would have posted an approximate deficit of 7% of GDP in 2009, with a reasonable uncertainty ranging between 7% and 8%, which would have freed us from being the focus of all markets.”

Peter Jungen: “Capitalism is the best system to reduce poverty. We need more capitalism. There is no alternative to capitalism, what we have to do is make it work well”

Unavoidable Reforms

Juan Velarde: “Spain is afflicted by a strong institutional problem as it devotes an important part of public expenditure to finance a series of institutions that slow down and do not activate economic life as a whole”

Elena Pisonero: “The euro is not an arrival station but a departure one”

Fernando Fernández: “Reducing structural deficit in Spain is not an option but a necessity; the only question is how. There are two options: the easy one, which is the one carried out by the Government: reducing expenditure as much as possible and raising taxes. And the other option, which implies redefining the State as we know it today and redefining public services and how to finance them”

Mauricio Rojas: “The Welfare State can be refounded. Abandoning populism and adopting fiscal responsibility is necessary. The reduction of public expenditure is not cutting rights that are not such. It is waking up from an illusion”

Antonio Beteta: “Spanish economy can only be addressed to reforms, that’s the road to prosperity”

Luis de Guindos: “Had Spain had a lower public deficit last year, it would not be the shooting target of international markets today”

Juan Iranzo: “To restore the competitiveness of Spanish economy, a series of economic reforms that are credible have to be set forth: fiscal consolidation, reforming the pension system, the health system and the administration”

Joaquín Trigo: “Of the last 30 years, we have had an unemployment rate above 20% in 10 of those years. Our best posting has been 8%, that is, our best figure has been worse that the worst figure of other economies”

Ricardo López Murphy: “Spain’s situation is similar to the Argentinean one in 2000 and 2001, and we haven’t managed to return to normality there: the ordinary situation is deprivation and urgency”